Teacher’s fury at Phantom prize

Alan Alker with his 'winning' card.
Alan Alker with his 'winning' card.

A WELL-KNOWN teacher is considering legal action against The Bay radio station after he was told he’d won their hit Phantom of The Bay competition – only for them to change their minds.

Alan Alker, assistant head at Morecambe Community High School where he has taught for 33 years, found the Phantom and was told he had won a £950 prize.

However, a few hours later his hopes were dashed when he was told he couldn’t have the money because The Bay said the winner’s card was obtained “under duress”.

Thousands of listeners took part in The Phantom of The Bay contest last week.

Through clues given out on air, they had to track down the Phantom who was located somewhere in the local area.

Mr Alker found the Phantom – a female member of The Bay - in a car parked in a layby at Beetham on Saturday morning.

He tapped on her window, she wound it down and he asked her the question: “Are you the Phantom of The Bay?”

She told Mr Alker she could not reply because she was in the car, got out of the vehicle and asked him to ask her the question again, which he did.

Mr Alker said he was told he’d won and asked to call The Bay to claim his prize. There he spoke to a producer who confirmed his victory and recorded an interview, which was not broadcast.

But then Bill Johnston, The Bay’s managing director, called him at 8pm that night to tell him he hadn’t won after all.

Geography tutor Mr Alker, best known for his former role as a sports teacher, said: “To be accused of somehow forcing an admission from The Phantom and then to be told that she was in tears as a result of our meeting is both insulting and offensive.

Read the full story in this week’s Visitor.